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  • Writer's pictureMichelle

I am constantly in awe of the natural beauty that surrounds us and the community spirit that fills our city. Our 57 parks are not just recreational areas - they are spaces where memories are made, where families gather, and where nature greets us at every corner. It's our duty to ensure these spaces remain clean, safe, and inviting for everyone.

We Face a Challenge Together. Recently, our community has faced challenges with off-leash dogs and excessive dog waste in our beloved public spaces. These issues extend beyond our parks, affecting private properties, state grounds, school playgrounds, church grounds, and other recreational facilities. Such problems detract from our quality of life and can pose health risks, especially to our children.

Introducing 'Leash Up! Clean Up!' Campaign. To address these concerns, we're launching the 'Leash Up! Clean Up!' initiative. This summer, join us in enhancing the beauty and safety of our community. We're focusing on education, enforcement, and engagement to promote responsible pet ownership, which includes adhering to leash laws and managing pet waste effectively. Join our ‘One Provo: Leash Up! Clean Up!’ effort!

  1. Educational Campaigns and Community Engagement - We're dedicated to educating our community about the importance of keeping dogs leashed and cleaning up after them. It’s essential for maintaining the integrity of our public spaces and for respecting the rights and safety of all community members.

  2. Enhanced Enforcement - Our partnership with Provo Police and Animal Control will increase patrols in key areas to ensure that our community adheres to these important rules. Compliance is critical, and we will address any instances of non-compliance swiftly. Provo City Code 8.02.110—Animals Running at Large (when off-leash), 8.02.120—Sanitation (cleaning up dog poop).

  3. Designated Off-Leash Areas and Dog Parks - Provo’s existing code and policies allow owners to use parks and trails if the animal is leashed and the owner disposes of dog waste. This approach is successful when a community is united in honoring such rules.

    1. Dedicated dog park(s) – Bicentennial Park (1400 E 1440 S) is a designated off-leash dog park. Parks and Recreation is exploring additional locations throughout the city.

    2. Part-time off-leash dog areas – Not currently utilized in Provo. Scheduling off-leash hours at existing parks has been unsuccessfully attempted by a few communities due to continuing conflicts and opposition. Additionally, this option has not appeared to resolve ongoing issues of leash laws and dog waste.

    3. Pet Friendly Residential Developments – Several residential communities and HOA’s are creating off-leash dog facilities on private property to support their tenants with pets.

  4. Improved Waste Management- Provo Parks and Recreation will help combat the issue of excessive dog waste by installing additional waste disposal stations in strategic locations across our parks and trails. Regular maintenance of these facilities will also be prioritized. Provo School District has also experienced similar issues with off-leash dogs and dog waste on Provo School District grounds and play equipment. There are increasing reports of children returning home from school with dog feces on their clothing, with some suggested to have caused illnesses in several children. The Provo School District is similarly working to establish more fencing, clean-up efforts, and increase signage at school grounds to reduce unwanted off-leash dog conflicts and dog waste.

  5. Community Involvement - We're calling upon residents to take an active role in safeguarding our parks by reporting any incidents of off-leash dogs or unattended waste. Together, we can ensure the upkeep of our shared recreational spaces.

Our parks and recreational facilities are the jewels of our city. As we strive to address these challenges, I am confident that with your help, we can maintain the beauty and safety of our communal spaces. Let's work together as 'One Provo' to keep our city clean and welcoming for all residents and visitors.

Thank you for your cooperation and commitment to making Provo a better place for everyone. Together, we can make a difference!

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It is my great honor to introduce Gordon Haight as Provo's new Public Works Director. Public Works is the largest department in our city, encompassing a variety of crucial divisions including water, engineering, and public services, which covers streets, sanitation, and fleet. Additionally, the department is responsible for the Provo Airport, an essential asset to our community.

Gordon Haight is ideally suited for this role, bringing over 30 years of experience in municipal work covering engineering, public works, and administration. His deep understanding of our community's needs and his proven track record of leadership and innovation are precisely what Provo needs as we continue to grow and thrive.

During his tenure as city engineer and interim public works director, Gordon played an instrumental role in several significant community projects. These include the overhead pedestrian bridge at Provo Central Station, the expansion of Provo Airport, and the enhancement of our trails and bike paths. Moreover, we are eagerly anticipating the opening of our 100-acre regional park this fall—a project that promises to enhance the quality of life for our residents.

Looking ahead, Gordon will lead transformative projects critical to our city's infrastructure, such as the upgrades to our wastewater and water treatment plants. These initiatives are not just about upgrading our facilities—they're about preparing Provo for a sustainable future, ensuring we can meet the demands of our growing population while maintaining the quality of life that makes our city so special.

Gordon’s journey to this pivotal role started in California, where he was raised before making Utah his home at the age of 21. He is a proud alumnus of BYU, where he earned a Bachelor's in Civil Engineering and a Master's in Engineering Management. Outside of his professional life, Gordon enjoys spending time with his family, particularly camping and hiking with his grandchildren—a testament to his deep appreciation for the natural beauty that surrounds us.

In Gordon Haight, we have a leader who not only meets but exceeds our city’s criteria for dynamic leadership, innovation, and engaging communication. We are confident that his vision and dedication will propel Provo to new heights. Please join me in welcoming Gordon as he takes on this crucial role, steering our public works toward a brighter and more innovative future.

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I am thrilled to share an exciting highlight from our recent Earth Day celebrations—a day that resonates deeply with our community's commitment to sustainability. This year, we had the distinct pleasure of presenting the Provo Green Business Award to SLB MegaDiamond Technology Center (MegaDiamond). This prestigious award, which was first introduced in 2017 by our dedicated Provo Citizens’ Sustainability Committee, aims to recognize businesses that are making significant efforts to positively impact our community and environment.

The award ceremony was held in MegaDiamond’s newly remodeled cafeteria, where I joined over 150 employees in celebrating this achievement. Presenting the award to Seth Conaway, the General Manager of MegaDiamond, was a proud moment for all of us. MegaDiamond stands out as a prime example of how a local company can prioritize sustainability and community well-being, setting a high standard for others to follow. Rick Cox, the business liaison for the volunteer committee, highlighted that in the seven-year history of our Green Business Award, only two other businesses have reached the prestigious Max Green level before MegaDiamond. Their unanimous selection for this award marks a significant milestone, showcasing their leadership in sustainability.

MegaDiamond has demonstrated exceptional commitment to environmental stewardship. They have significantly reduced their carbon footprint by 5,000 tons annually, cut water consumption by 4.6 million gallons a year, and recycled or eliminated over 200 tons of material annually through various strategic initiatives. These efforts include investing in LED lighting, utilizing 100% solar power offsets through Provo's Community Solar program, and innovative water reuse practices.

Furthermore, MegaDiamond has actively engaged in the community with initiatives like adopting a section of the Provo River Trail for quarterly cleanups. This not only helps preserve our local ecosystem but also sets an inspiring example of corporate responsibility.

As we move forward, it is clear that MegaDiamond’s actions will inspire other businesses in Provo to adopt more sustainable practices. Their impressive 89% reduction in CO2 emissions is just the beginning of what I believe will be a lasting legacy of environmental stewardship within our business community.

Thank you, MegaDiamond, and congratulations once again on your well-deserved recognition.

Provo Green Business Award Recipients:

Honors Level

Lakeview Car Wash

Fort Laundry

Utah Safety Emission

Mayor’s Award Level


Maximum Green Level




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